ramblings from the noisedoctor

September 2, 2006

got mulch?

Filed under: Christianity, gardening — noisedoctor @ 9:55 am

A couple weeks ago (while in the middle of my most recent “elephant task“), the township road crew was taking down two trees in front of my next-door-neighbor’s house to widen our road. I went out and asked them if they were able to give me the wood chips when they were done grinding it all up. They were more than happy to do so. In face, the truck drive asked if I wanted “some more” because they were taking down “a couple” more trees nearby. Now, I’m the kind of wacky gardener guy that just can’t say no to free mulch. I don’t buy mulch. I have a wood chipper and 8 acres of woods, so I make my own mulch. A chance to get it for free without the work of chipping myself. How could I say no to that.

So, I expected to get a small load of wood chips, enough to cover the new flowerbed I was making. Sure enough, the truck arrived and dropped a load of wood chips–but a good bit more than I expected. Wow. How cool. I was mildly excited. Yeah, I know, you can’t quite understand that. But, about an hour later, the truck arrived again and started to back into my driveway. There’s more? I thought. Yup. Just a little bit. Now I was really excited.This was way more than I needed for the flowerbed. Now I could mulch the fruit trees, the strawberry patch, and some other areas under trees that could really use it. I was thrilled.

Mulch Pile

And, it got me thinking of the book we were studying in our life group (like a Bible study, but not just Bible study). We’ve been going through Your Best Life Now by Joel Osteen. A lot of the book is about seeking and receiving God’s blessing in our lives. This incident illustrated two key points.

First, I had to do something. I could have sat and watched the tree removal team all day long. I could have thought nice thoughts of, “Wow, I wish I could have all those wood chips” or “I hope y’all offer those to me.” But, I had to get up, walk over there and ask. And, I had to be direct and ask for what I wanted–not just beat around the proverbial bush with stuff like “Gee, I hope you’re not going to go put those chips in a landfill.” No, I had to ask for what I wanted.

Second, I got blessed beyond all my expectations. I was looking for a pickup truck-sized load of chips. I got two full-sized-dump truck loads of chips. I asked for a tiny bit and I got a whole lot. How often do we sheepishly go to God and ask for a tiny little bit of something, when He is so capable of giving us a whole lot of what we seek.

I love the way The Message translates Romans 5:5: “In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary — we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit!”

God is definitely not stingy. If He is so generous with such simple little things, He is certainly generous in the things that matter, just as it says in Romans 5:5.

Doesn’t that get you excited?

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